In present-day Georgia two separate generations live side by side: the aging seniors raised in the Soviet era; and today’s youth, who have grown up with heavy influence from Western culture. The more Georgia’s youth is influenced by the West, the more nostalgic older generations become for their Soviet roots.

On the 26th of  December 1991 the Supreme Council made a decision about, the Soviet Union’s collapse. As a result of this, the Soviet Union’s 15 republics, including Georgia appeared to be independent.

With its length of 1,515 kilometres Kura (georgian: Mtkwari) is the longest river in the Caucasus region. It rises in Turkey, crosses Georgia and drains into the Caspian Sea in Azerbaijan. With their work “Water without Salt” Arne Piepke and Ingmar Björn Nolting documented their journey along the river in Georgia – along the undefined borders of Asia and Europe. Their photographs tell stories about the daily life, the cultural and ethnical differences along the river and their personal encounters. They met farmers, unemployed people, former refugees, pensioners and an Imam – common people telling them about their life, their stories and dreams along Kura.

‘Tales of Lipstick and Virtue’ deals with the crossroads of gender, class, ethnicity and their interconnection to self representation as well as post-colonialism, authenticity and pseudo luxury.

The work consists of portraits in Albania and figurative fake-stills of brand imitations and counterfeit luxury out of the studio. Using methods of documentary, fashion and advertising photography, it is blurring the thin line between original and bootleg, truth and fiction, genuine and counterfeit.

In Silesian dialect “kajnikaj” means “here and there”. This is a good description for my town in the southern edge of Poland, a place where nothing interesting happens. People are busy working hard as coal miners or drinking even harder while out of work.

“J.B. about men floating in the air” was inspired by the story of two Lithuanian-American pilots who tried to set a new world record by flying over the Atlantic into Eastern Europe in the early 1930s. I found a reference to the attempt in a Joseph Brodsky poem and decided to create my own ‘parallel world’ in black-and-white images.

If you imagine a modern city such as Moscow in the space-time base, it is easy to see that the manifestation of the creative will fades as it growths from the center to the outskirts as if it is ruthlessly washed out from the urban environment by the centrifugal force. New types of typical apartment building areas which arising massively at the boundaries of the city are often  deprived of any super ideas and their design is based on maximum utility. Watching everyday life of these spaces I snatch significant pieces and disparate parts from the present reality so to add them together and get a picture of an imaginary future.

"This is not real life" © Dominika Gesicka

There is a place where no one is born and no one dies. Of course you can die anywhere but you cannot be buried here as it has been discovered that bodies fail to decompose here. You cannot be born here because pregnant women are to return to the mainland to give birth. There are no cats, no trees, no traffic lights. There is no amusement park, but there is a circus troupe. In the winter time it is completely dark, but in the summer sun never sets. The place is called Longyearbyen and it is the largest settlement and an administrative center of Svalbard. It is also the world’s northernmost city. Although it is difiicult to regard it the best place to live, many people fall in love with it at first sight. Some people came here just for two weeks and stayed for five years or more, but not many decide to settle down here permanently. Sometimes you have an impresssion that people here are trying to escape from something; that this is just a retreat. This is not a real life.

I done all photos in Japan, but it is not a story about this country. Although I have used its traditions and religion. And the fact, that for me, it was a completely unknown territory. The main motive is the Shinto, japan mythology (yokai) and way of thinking about the sacred. But Shinto is another cover, artificial dictionary which allowed me to understand what I say. It is in the Japanese relationship to nature, something to give me hope, the conviction that we are part of nature, that we not strayed too far.

The starting point of my work is the question of the reality behind identity-forming images in an ever changing society, the production and the conditions, its readability and reception. I ask for the mutual conditionality of photo- graphy and architecture, as well as the reciprocal dependency of both of these language systems. I am interested in their interplay and the relation of the image and illustratability. Based on the assumption that both photography as well as architecture can equally be utilized in a judgemental and manipulative way, I try to analyze the possibi- lities and problems of the constructing qualities of these two genres. Photography is by no means regarded as a medium producing pure reality any longer, but it is seen as an autonomous medium with judgemental, interpretative characteristics. The same can be said about architecture.